Queensland is planning to build a regional quarantine hub at Wellcamp, west of Brisbane, in a deal with local businessman John Wagner.

The proposal was rejected early this year by the federal government for not meeting criteria – including that it had to be close to an international airport – but despite this, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk is pushing ahead alone.

The Wagners will own the hub and lease it to the government for a year, with this arrangement at odds with the prime minister’s preference for facilities to be Commonwealth-owned.

The deal means the state is set for two purpose-built facilities, which includes the one at the Pinkenba army barracks near Brisbane Airport.

The Commonwealth is responsible for approving international arrivals and where they are quarantined.

The announcement came as a shock to everyone including the Toowoomba mayor but the premier defended the need for the facility, saying the quarantine model is here to stay.

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